GOLF DIGEST SCHOOLS

Your Guide to Breaking 80

1  of  4

Lesson 1: Developing a Stock Shot

video breakdown

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OVERVIEW SWING THOUGHTS DRILLS

OVERVIEW

Having a go-to shot you can play with confidence will help you structure your driving and iron play. It could be a draw or a fade, whichever works best for you. In this video, Kyle Morris shares the most effective ways to develop your own stock shot. He also discusses some of the technical swing flaws that typically hold players back. Here you’ll learn how to practice your shot and groove it for the golf course.

SWING THOUGHTS

For full swings, make sure you have some spine tilt away from the target at address
On the backswing, turn your hips in place and let your weight shift to your right instep
As you start down, keep your back to the target as long as you can
On the downswing, swing your arms back in front of your body without your right shoulder moving out toward the ball
At impact, feel like you’re turning the knuckles of your top hand to the ground
As you swing through, match up your arms and lower body so they move through together

DRILLS

Through the Gate

  • Stick two alignment rods in the ground about a yard apart and several yards down your target line.
  • One rod should be directly on the target line, the other on the side where you should start your ball based on your normal curve—right side for a draw; left side for a fade.
  • Hit balls through the “gate,” and try to start each shot at the outside alignment rod (right one for a draw; left one for a fade) and curve it toward the target without over-curving.

Feedback Drill

  • Stick an alignment rod in the ground at an angle toward you so that the top of the rod touches the tops of your wrists at setup.
  • Then take one step toward the target, staying in your setup position, and place a tee in the ground to mark the spot where the ball will be.
  • Hit some full shots from this practice station.
  • If you swing back properly, your hands will move just inside the rod. If you bump the rod coming down, your swing is steep and out to in. Your goal is to miss it in both directions.

The Wall Drill

  • Get in your setup with a wall one arm’s length to your left.
  • Prop up a club or umbrella vertically in front of you with your left hand.
  • Mimic a small backswing with your right arm only and then swing through under your left arm, trying to reach the wall with your right hand.
  • Holding the object with your left hand will keep your shoulders from rotating open as you swing through. Your hips should turn open freely, and your weight should be on your front foot—that’s how your body should feel at impact in your normal swing.
Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game
2 Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game
  • The keys to hitting more fairways
  • How to calculate shot-specific yardages
  • The intersection of power and control
  • Scoring strategies for the long game

Your Guide to Breaking 80

2  of  4

Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game

video breakdown

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OVERVIEW SWING THOUGHTS DRILLS

OVERVIEW

During any round, you’ll face some tough holes, such as long par 4s, where you need to be sharp with your long clubs to post a good score. This starts with a well-positioned drive and requires a precise shot from the fairway. In this video, Kyle Morris shares his best tips on how to dial in your technique with the long clubs. He also teaches you routines for picking the right shot and club and discusses the pitfalls to avoid.

SWING THOUGHTS

When hitting driver, pick a realistic target and play a shot that fits your eye
To maximize driving distance, swing your arms down faster but keep your upper body turned back for as long as possible
On iron shots, first assess your lie, then pick your landing spot. After that, consider how the wind and elevation change could affect the shot
Avoid technical swing thoughts as you step in to execute

DRILLS

Pre-shot Routine

  • From behind the ball, visualize the entire shot from start to finish.
  • Make a practice swing where you create a sensation for the swing you’re trying to make.
  • Commit to the target and shot you’ve selected as you step into the shot.
  • Prevent negative thoughts by holding that sensation from your practice swing.
Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game
3 Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game
  • Avoiding sloppy greenside play
  • A step-by-step routine for picking your shot
  • What “bounce” is and why you need it
  • How to read lies around the greens

Your Guide to Breaking 80

3  of  4

Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game

video breakdown

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OVERVIEW SWING THOUGHTS DRILLS

OVERVIEW

How many times have you missed a green, driven your cart up, and just grabbed a wedge and your putter without even looking at the shot? That kind of careless approach often results in wasted strokes around the greens. Kyle Morris explains how to evaluate short-game shots—the lie, the landing spot, the swing and, finally, the club. You’ll see how an organized greenside game plan will help you save pars and break 80.

SWING THOUGHTS

The first step around the greens is to assess how your lie will influence the shot
On greenside shots, choose a landing spot one to three paces onto the green
Decide if a low, medium or high trajectory from off the green is best to hit your landing spot and roll the correct distance
Choose a club for greenside shots that allows you to produce the trajectory you want to fly and roll the ball as intended

DRILLS

Three Greenside Lies

  • Practice playing shots from the various lies you face in greenside rough.
  • For perched lies, try to pick the ball off the top of the grass with a more rounded swing.
  • For average lies in greenside rough, add more energy to counter the effect of the grass slowing down the club through impact.
  • For buried greenside lies, make a steeper swing with less follow-through—a chop-and-pop stroke.
Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round
4 Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round
  • Why you should start and end with putting
  • Creating a feel and rhythm for the day
  • What never to do before a round
  • Making the transition from range to course

Your Guide to Breaking 80

4  of  4

Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round

video breakdown

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OVERVIEW

Once you’ve worked on the mechanics of the long game and built some structure into your short game, it’s time to learn to prepare for a round. In this video, Kyle Morris shows you the various pieces and the proper order of an effective warm-up session. This is no time to work on technique or to try to patch your swing. Learn to tap into your feel and rhythm, boost your confidence, and get your body and mind into the proper state to perform like an athlete.

SWING THOUGHTS

Start your pre-round warm-up by making short putts and working on the pace of long putts
After you warm up on the putting green, hit some chips and pitches with different clubs and from different lies, focusing on trajectory and roll-out
After your short-game warm-up, head to the range and progress through your bag from short clubs to long. Focus on making smooth swings and developing a feel for the day
Stop at the putting green after you warm up on the range: Hit a few putts from two or three feet, going through your full routine to simulate putting during a round

DRILLS

Speed-Putting Drill

  • Place an alignment rod two feet behind a hole.
  • Drop three balls, one five paces from the hole and the other two progressively farther out.
  • Try to roll each putt in or past the hole without bumping the rod. Pay attention to speed and the rhythm and feel of your stroke.

Your Guide to Breaking 80

Lesson
1 / 4
Lesson 1: Developing a Stock Shot
2 / 4
Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game
3 / 4
Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game
4 / 4
Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round
Your Guide to Breaking 80 INDEX
Lesson 1: Developing a Stock Shot
1/4
Lesson 1: Developing a Stock Shot
  • Learn to control your shot pattern
  • Drills for establishing a go-to shot
  • Fixing common swing flaws
  • Self-tests to monitor your progress
  • Learn to control your shot pattern
  • Drills for establishing a go-to shot
  • Fixing common swing flaws
  • Self-tests to monitor your progress
Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game
2/4
Lesson 2: Dialing in Your Long Game
  • The keys to hitting more fairways
  • How to calculate shot-specific yardages
  • The intersection of power and control
  • Scoring strategies for the long game
  • The keys to hitting more fairways
  • How to calculate shot-specific yardages
  • The intersection of power and control
  • Scoring strategies for the long game
Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game
3/4
Lesson 3: Organizing Your Short Game
  • Avoiding sloppy greenside play
  • A step-by-step routine for picking your shot
  • What “bounce” is and why you need it
  • How to read lies around the greens
  • Avoiding sloppy greenside play
  • A step-by-step routine for picking your shot
  • What “bounce” is and why you need it
  • How to read lies around the greens
Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round
4/4
Lesson 4: Getting Ready for a Round
  • Why you should start and end with putting
  • Creating a feel and rhythm for the day
  • What never to do before a round
  • Making the transition from range to course
  • Why you should start and end with putting
  • Creating a feel and rhythm for the day
  • What never to do before a round
  • Making the transition from range to course